City of Montgomery gathers ideas for better living by 2040

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - The City of Montgomery held a summit for youth and young adults to come and fill out surveys to help create its comprehensive plan on Tuesday evening. The planning process is called Envision Montgomery 2040. Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange said the purpose of the process is get input from different sectors of the community to create a "living" document that the City can use for the next 20 years.

Strange said the last time Montgomery implemented a new comprehensive plan was 50 years ago. He said young adults are important in the process.

"They are our future," Strange said. "We want to know what you want Montgomery to look liked in 2040 and what it will take for you to stick around, be a part of that process for the next 20 years."

"This is going to be a long-range comprehensive plan," explained Lynda Wool, a senior planner for the City of Montgomery. "It will cover most aspects of people's lives. We obviously know we have work to do with our education system, we have work to do with getting better job training and opportunities to get people to have a good life. Right now, not everyone in our city is able to make a living wage."

Attendees had the option to sit at different tables and give their input on issues like entertainment, job opportunities, art, history, culture and the environment.

The city is working with a company called Planning Next to gather data to create the plan. Mayor Strange said the city will pay about $400,000. He said the City Council set aside half of that amount in the current budget and the other half will come from the next fiscal year's budget.

"It's not an expense," Strange said. "It's an investment."

There will be a second summit on Oct. 4 at the Dunn-Oliver Acadome from 6-8 p.m. for all residents to come give their views for the process. Mayor Strange said a committee will come together later this year to start working on the plan and that he hopes to have it ready in the second half of next year.

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